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January 30, 2018

When Things Are Great Just As They Are

In the DIY world, it’s so easy to get caught up in the Doing part of it. We scour thrift stores for things we can upgrade, re-paint, re-finish, re-purpose, re-do to make it better suit our needs. In the hurry of life, it’s easy to keep one’s brain in fast mode, sizing items, people, even ideas up quickly an in a snap. I think it’s time we stop to examine things just as they are, especially at the beginning of the year when reflection and change are on people’s minds.

In mid-December I was at a Goodwill looking for some inspiration for projects and generally seeing what was in this store, one of the newest ones in West Columbia. I found a few great things that you’ll see in the course of the upcoming year (and one you’ve already seen), and one of them was this small red wire basket. It’s pretty plain, there isn’t anything special about it other than it’s intactness, and when I was picking it up to carry around the store with me as I looked for other items, I thought about what I could do with it.

“Hm, I could spray paint this copper and use it in the kitchen as a catchall for that corner where everything piles up.” Or, “What if I wove some metallic ribbon through it and used it as a cute way to gift someone cookies for Christmas?” I thought about a few other things to do with it as I walked around, and ended up buying it, of course. As the busyness of Christmas drew near and projects fell to the wayside, I set the basket in that corner of the kitchen (after a good washing, of course), and let it do one of the things I mentally intended it to do — hold things. It didn’t need to be prettied up with copper paint. It was doing great just as it was. The pop of red adds a nice color to the area, and it draws the eyes so that it doesn’t become a forgotten basket full of stuff on the counter.

In a world where we’re busy and our brains are full of to-do lists, it’s nice to be able to enjoy things for what they are without creating an extra chore. Not everything is great as-is though, and it’s good to have the creativity to see the beauty in things that aren’t naturally pretty, but I think it’s just as important to see the beauty in the regular things too. Take some time at the beginning of this fresh year to marvel at the ordinary and see things in a new light.

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